Here’s the Antidote for Ungrateful Kids - Finds.Life.Church

Here’s the Antidote for Ungrateful Kids

by Samantha Lowe

Ungrateful kids. We’ve all seen them. We’ve all dealt with them. We’ve all been frustrated with them. And if our memories were only long enough, we’d realize we all probably used to be them! It looks a little something like this.

Your preschooler doesn’t want to share.

You can’t make it through the grocery store without your kids asking for everything.

There’s a fight every single day over who gets to sit in the front seat.

Your teen insists they deserve the newer, better, upgraded phone with the bigger data plan. Oh, and the latest shoes are desperately needed.

Do they even think, for one minute, of all the stuff you’ve done for them? They have so much—but they won’t give anything! What’s the antidote for ungrateful kids?

Generosity can help! Here are a few (non-financially draining) ways to give your ungrateful kids a good dose of generosity to help it become their first habit—instead of their last. Pick one or two ideas you think will work well for your family.

A verse to help: Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Psalm 37:4 NLT

A verse to help: I will praise you, Lᴏʀᴅ, with all my heart; I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done. Psalm 9:1 NLT

A verse to help: … don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God. Hebrews 13:16 NLT

A verse to help: … Remind them to be ready to do what is good. Titus 3:1 NIRV

A verse to help: … You can’t serve God and Money at the same time. Matthew 6:24 NIRV

A verse to help: “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” Matthew 25:40 NIV

Age-Specific Ideas for Ungrateful Kids

Here are some resources for working with your kids to unlock the power of generosity. Each age group also includes some questions you can use to start a conversation about generosity and gratitude in your home.

Show your preschoolers and verbal toddlers how to be generous:

  1. Start this Bible Plan about the first Christmas gift.
  2. Show your little ones this video about giving and Christmas.
  3. As you work through this topic together ask the questions below.
    • What are some of your very favorite things?
    • What are some things that are really hard to share with others?
    • Let your child participate in making something they can give away to others—cookies for neighbors, drawings for grandparents, or a gift for a teacher or small group leader.

Help your elementary kids to grow in gratitude:

  1. Start this Bible Plan about starving greed.
  2. Watch this Konnect episode with your child.
  3. As you work through this topic together ask the questions below at mealtime or when you have some time together.
    • What stuff do you hang onto that you could probably get rid of?
    • What gifts are you most grateful for receiving?
    • Jesus said it was better to give than to receive. Share about a time when you really felt that it was better to give than to receive.

Connect with your preteens about giving:

  1. Read this Bible Plan about generosity with your preteen.
  2. Watch this episode of The Loop Show and try not to laugh so hard you cry.
  3. As you work through this topic together ask the questions below at mealtime or when you have some time together.
    • What are some ways you can honor God with your money?
    • What is some stuff that may have a grip on your heart? What will you do about that?
    • What are some ways you can be generous to others without making a big deal out of it?

Practice living a generous life with your teenagers:

  1. Use the Plans With Friends feature in the YouVersion Bible App to read this Bible Plan with your teen. Or better yet, encourage them to start the plan with some friends.
  2. Ask your teen if they’ve seen the latest episode of Switch yet. If yes, watch it so you can catch up. If not, watch it together.
  3. As you work through this topic together ask the questions below at mealtime or when you have some time together.
    • What’s one thing I could do as a parent to be a better example of generosity?
    • How generous do you think you are? What are some examples that helped you come up with your answer?
    • What are some values about generosity you hope you have as an adult? What might that look like at this point in your life?